Loopholes Table of Contents
Though not technically a loophole, more a monumentally ill conceived idea for a promotion, Sky gave me over £1500 in just a few hours last summer. Loopholes imply that there is glitch in the bookie or casino’s system, yet in this case stunned Profit Squad members took advantage of Sky’s promotion exactly according to its terms and conditions. However, I guess we can call it a loophole as it certainly was a mistake; the offer was promptly removed as no doubt shocked Sky accountants saw cash heamhorraging from their coffers upon arriving at work at 9am to find that Profit Squad members had stayed up through the night and helped themselves.
Being on holiday visiting family in the States I was a little late on this one. Those who noticed this offer a few hours earlier than me made significantly more, with many Profit Squad members taking upwards of £5000 in one day.
I was about to go to bed. It was 11pm in Nashville, Tennessee where I was spending the summer with my sister, her husband and their two newborn twin daughters. I decided to check Profit Squad for any quick offers I could complete before bed. As soon as I saw the details of the offer I knew I couldn’t go to bed. This was too good to be true. I reasoned that as soon as Sky’s staff realized the extent of damage this offer would do to their bank balance it would be pulled from their site immediately.
With it being 11pm stateside and therefore very early in the morning in the UK, I knew I had a few hours tops before office hours begun and the offer would be taken down. So I popped the coffee on, opened up my Sky account, and bet thousands of pounds in £5 bets on roulette instead of going to bed. By about 4am I was really hungry, but I knew that at any moment the offer would disappear. I really wanted to make just a quick slice of toast but I realized that completing such a task would cost me about £30 in lost earnings! Have you ever paid £30 for a slice of toast?!
By the time the offer had been removed I was over £1500 up, while other Profit Squad members had made even more. I cursed my luck at first, wishing I had been checking my notifications more often as I would have made over £5000 had I took action from the moment the offer was posted, but I soon cheered up, knowing that I could now comfortably afford a trip to New York City on the way back to the UK, and that my upcoming relocation to Spain would now be even easier financially.
So how did Profit Squad members make so much from this offer? You had to bet £5 on ‘Red’ on Roulette. For every ten winning £5 red bets, Sky gave you £10 cash which was automatically credited. Strangely enough, Sky openly advertised that it was ok to do this offer ‘as many times as you like until the end of September’. This was in the first week of September. Needless to say it didn’t even last until the next afternoon.
Under normal circumstances, as you have a just under 50% chance of a red or black bet on a roulette table winning, every 200 bets of £5 (with a total value of £1000) would, on average return just under £1000. The theoretical return to player (RTP) of roulette is 97%, meaning that you can expect £970 back from every £1000 staked. However, on this occasion, as you could expect, on average, to win 100 red bets, Sky would give you £10 ten times. This fundamentally changed the RTP, putting it firmly in customers’ favour. Now, for every £1000 staked, you could expect a return of £1070, making the RTP 107% – that excess 7% being the edge with brought many delighted Profit Squad members thousands of pounds that night.
Was this offer risky? Having to stake so many £5s to get each £10? In theory yes, but in reality it was only risky for those with small banks. Although betting on red or black makes a win almost 50% likely, it is not impossible for the ball to land on ten blacks in a row. Had you only had £50 available to bet, then this balance would have been wiped out in such a scenario. But for those with £250 or more in their Sky accounts, the chances of their balance going down to zero before sky-rocketing upwards were infinitely small. I started with £290 ready to bet. My balance went as low as £210 before recovering then shooting up to well over £1000.
The above maths shows an example of how important having ‘an edge’ really is. Without one you are doomed to fail. 7% doesn’t sound a lot, but when you consider that companies around the world are able to build staggeringly large, money spinning enterprises like Ceasar’s Palace from their edge, which on most games is nowhere near 7%, you realise just how profitable this offer was.